360° VR Panoramas of East of the Sierra Nevada
Bodie Ghost Town - Part One
Near Bridgeport, California


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The road to Bodie

The road to Bodie

The last three mile stretch of road to Bodie from Highway 395 has never been paved. It is a reminder of the remoteness of the town site. This is sagebrush desert, at an elevation of 8375 feet (2550 meters), and winters are very cold - in fact the town's founder, W.S. Bodey, froze to death a year after staking his claim.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015
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Bodie cemetery

Bodie cemetery

Bodie's cemeteries are on the slope southwest of the town. About 80 grave markers still exist.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Restored grave fences in the Bodie cemetery

Restored grave fences in the Bodie cemetery

There are actually five cemeteries clustered together here, Wards Cemetery being the main city graveyard, flanked by the Masonic Cemetery and the Miners Union Cemetery. Further west is the Chinese Cemetery and the nameless "boot hill" burying ground for criminals and outcasts of various sorts.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Rusty mining equipment

Rusty mining equipment

A massive fly wheel and a reconstructed mine headframe next to the restroom and parking area.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Overview of Bodie

Overview of Bodie

Despite repeated fires, especially the final one in 1932 that destroyed 90% of the town, an assortment of buildings survive from Bodie's glory days late in the 19th century. There are now about 110 buildings, out of the 2000 the town had in 1880 when there were 8500 residents.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Methodist Church at the corner of Green and Fuller streets

Methodist Church at the corner of Green and Fuller streets

The Methodist Church is the largest and most striking of the buildings remaining along Green Street. It was built in 1882 and remained in use until 1932, when the last residents left Bodie.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Inside the Methodist Church in Bodie

Inside the Methodist Church in Bodie

The Methodist Church was vandalized before state parks took over, but retains pews and an altar table. The Catholic Church, built the same year, burned in the 1930's. It is often mentioned that the town had only two churches but 65 saloons.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Green Street side of the J.S. Cain residence in Bodie

Green Street side of the J.S. Cain residence in Bodie

The Cain House is the largest remaining private residence in town, and notable for its east-facing glassed-in porch. The Miller House next door is one of the few that is ever open to the public. During Bodie's long decline Cain bought up much of the town and employed caretakers to guard his property.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

J.S. Cain residence on Park Street in Bodie

J.S. Cain residence on Park Street in Bodie

James Stuart Cain was one of the richest men in Bodie, both through his timber business that barged lumber and firewood across Mono Lake, and his eventual ownership of the Standard Consolidated Mining Company.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Red barn of beautifully weathered wood

Red barn of beautifully weathered wood

Buildings large and small, significant and unimportant, are all the same golden brown color of dry weathered pine boards. Some, like this barn, are roughly constructed, the church and residences are more finely crafted. Most were originally painted, in this case red, but few traces of paint remain.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Boarded up buildings of weathered wood in Bodie

Boarded up buildings of weathered wood in Bodie

Bodie is mostly constructed of Jeffrey pine timber from the Mono Craters or Sierra Nevada. Despite the extreme inflammability of all this dry wood, and a history of major fires, the ghost town survives, looking much as it did when the state took it over in 1962. Of course smoking is strictly prohibited and fire hydrants are strategically located throughout the area.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

Mine winding engine

Mine winding engine

A winding engine and rusty old junk from Bodie's days as a busy mining town. This is at the top of Green Street, where most people enter the town.

Bodie State Historic Park, California

Date photographed: October 12, 2015

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